Delaware police play war at U of D campus
NEWARK — The University of Delaware wants to be sure it’s prepared for a crisis situation.
For a few hours Wednesday, its East Campus was transformed into a mock crisis zone, complete with automatic weapons, Kevlar vests, battle helmets and even snipers..
More than 200 special weapons and tactics officers, hostage negotiators as well as explosive ordnance and device units from throughout the state participated in a full-scale training exercise yesterday at Penny Hall and the Harrington Residence Hall complex.
Participants played the roles of protesters, hostages and armed assailants, and police integrated the responses of multiple agencies with various specialized assets into one unified force. The emphasis of the training was on ensuring communication and inter-agency collaboration.
“We never know when a scenario might happen on campus when a person might pull a gun or there might be a suspicious package,” said Marcia Nickle, emergency preparedness manager at UD.
“We think it’s really important to be proactive as opposed to reactive,” she said.
Shootings and bomb threats, which have occurred at high schools and universities across the country in recent years, have made preparing for the unimaginable a must, said Chief Patrick Ogden of the UD police.
“We hope that we never have to use the tactics that we practiced today, but we need to be prepared if something does happen,” he said.
“If you had a Virginia Tech-like event on campus, you would need SWAT,” Ogden said in reference to the 2007 deadly shooting rampage by a student.
“There were a lot of things with communications that were not as good as they should be today, but I would rather learn that in a training environment than in the real world. Overall, it was a success because now we can work out the kinks,” he added.
The training also provides law enforcement teams an opportunities to practice and use skills for real-life situations later. The police departments represented included those from Wilmington, Newark, New Castle County and the Delaware State Police.
Re: Delaware police play war at U of D campus
Sleep well tonight.
Originally Posted by Chase